The disturbing truth is that pedestrian deaths have risen dramatically in recent years due to distracted driving and distracted walking. According to Governors Highway Safety Association’s annual Spotlight on Pedestrian Traffic Fatalities report, nearly 6,000 pedestrians were killed in motor vehicle crashes in the U.S. last year.
Policy makers are grappling with finding a solution for the staggering rise in pedestrian deaths. Urban environments with numerous distractions and a higher concentration of drivers and pedestrians are the epicenters of the crisis.
So, what can you do to avoid and/or reduce pedestrian accidents?
First, evaluate your insurance coverage. The alarming statistics in pedestrian deaths underscore the importance of adequate insurance protection. As a driver, make sure you have liability insurance. Almost all states require that drivers carry liability insurance to cover personal injuries and/or damage to third parties and their property. As a pedestrian, consider your employee benefit and personal healthcare insurance options, including accident and/or disability (short- and long-term) insurance. Accident insurance can help offset costs associated with an injury. Disability insurance can replace a portion of your income if you are too hurt to work due to an injury.
Here are some additional tips:
To help you drive more safely
- Only use your cell phone for emergency situations.
- If you are tired, pull off the road. Don't try to get to your final destination faster.
- You should limit the level of activity inside the car - eating while driving, searching for music, calling family and friends, text messaging.
- Always focus on the road and the drivers around you.
To protect yourself as a pedestrian
- Always look before crossing the street.
- Make eye contact with drivers to make sure they see you.
- If you need to use a cell phone or other electronic devices while walking, take extra precautions to notice your surroundings, including car traffic, bikes, stop lights or even other people not paying attention.
- Only cross at designated crosswalks.
- Never rely on a car to stop.
By taking conscious steps to protect yourself and others on the road, you become part of the solution to avoid and/or reduce distracted driving and pedestrian accidents. Contact your HUB broker to make sure you’ve got the right coverage.